Apple Orchard

Windsor CT

Windsor, CT

Henry Wolcott, Jr. (1610-1680) arrived in America in 1630 on the ship Mary and John, which landed in Nantasket. He first lived in Boston and then moved to Windsor CT around 1636, where he became a farmer and merchant.

Wolcott had one of the largest apple orchards in the Connecticut Valley.  He kept a careful record of his business in an account book that survives today in the Connecticut Historical Society. Using shorthand, he listed his trees, new grafts, plantings, and production.  In 1650, the orchard yielded 212 bushels of apples. Most of his apples were used to make cider, a popular drink in colonial days–and he reported “500 hogsheads of cider” one year.

Wolcott also used shorthand to record the words of sermons that he heard, including sermons by Thomas Hooker, the Puritan leader who broke with Massachusetts colony to found Connecticut.  Wolcott’s records have provided researchers with valuable documentation of Hooker’s words.

Connecticut Charter of 1662

Connecticut Charter of 1662, Connecticut State Archives

Wolcott was a leader  in his community. His name is on the Connecticut Charter of 1662, and he was a member of the Connecticut House of Deputies and House of Magistrates.  In 1669, he was given 300 acres for his services.  Wolcott returned to England several times, since he was the heir to his father’s property there.  He married Sarah Newberry in 1641, and they had seven children. Sarah and Henry Wolcott were my ninth-great grandparents in the Gould line.

There were many Wolcotts in colonial Connecticut, distantly related through Henry Wolcott’s father and grandfather, including Dr. Alexander Wolcott, a member of the US Supreme Court, and Oliver Wolcott, CT governor, and signer of the Declaration of Independence.


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2 Responses to Apple Orchard

  1. vahughes17 says:

    great research…what is “500 hogshead of cider”?

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